Mark Jackley


Who knows why I dreamt
that I could start my Ford
by crawling underneath it
and lighting votive candles—
it was car repair for poets,
staring at the cold
baffling machinery
in the little darkness,
admiring the perfect
curve of the crescent wrench,
which recalled the dance of starlings
spelling something in
the alphabet of dusk—
not an answer,
not a question,
hardly an equation,
though possibly a page
from a manual we have lost.

Mark Jackley lives in Purcellville, Virginia. His poems have appeared in Fifth Wednesday, Natural Bridge, Talking River, and other journals.